Turkey, Allies meet to mark 97th Gallipoli anniversary
ÇANAKKALE - Doğan News Agency
An Ally soldier salutes the memorial dedicated to the deceased soldiers, who lost their lives during World War I landing at the Dardanelles strait. Nearly 10,000 people are expected to arrive today to participate the ceremonies. AA photoTurkey marked the 97th anniversary of the Allies’ World War I landing at the Dardanelles strait in the northwestern province of Çanakkale with ceremonies attended by high-ranking officials and foreign dignitaries on April 24.
“[The Battle of] Gallipoli is a solemn story of enemies who exhibited heroism, bravery and mutual respect throughout the war. Gallipoli is a story of how old enemies became old friends,” New Zealand Immigration Minister Nathan Guy said at the ceremony.
Among other prominent figures who attended the ceremony were Çanakkale Gov. Güngör Azim Tuna, French Ambassador Laurent Bili and Australian Ambassador Ian Biggs, as well as the representatives of other countries who partook in the campaign.
‘Wipe your tears away’
“Thus President Mustafa Kemal Atatürk summed up the courtesy demonstrated by the Turkish people toward former invaders: ‘You, the mothers who sent their sons away to countries far away; wipe your tears away. Your sons now lie in our bosom and are at peace. They have also become our sons after they lost their lives on this land,’” Guy said.
Ceremonies are also to be held at Anzac Bay, the Lone Pine and the New Zealand Monument today.
Gov. Tuna in his speech highlighted the significance of the Gallipoli Battle in helping to forge the Turkish nation.
Australian Minister of Veterans’ Affairs Ian Campbell also visited Gov. Tuna in his office, and said Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard would also attend today’s proceedings. Nearly 10,000 Australians and New Zealanders would also arrive to partake in the commemoration, he said.